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General News of Friday, 19 February 2021


We had intelligence report before Dapchi girls’ abduction - Ex-CDI Usman

Ambassadorial nominee, who retired as the Chief of Defence Intelligence, Air Vice Marshal Muhammad Usman (retd.), has said on Thursday, February 18, 2021, that his office had intelligence report that Boko Haram insurgents would kidnap Dapchi girls.

Exactly two years ago in February 2018, over 200 schoolgirls were abducted by terrorists in Dapchi, Yobe State.

Usman made this known when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs for vetting as an ambassadorial nominee.

“There was an intelligence report on Dapchi before it occurred. We saw indicators building up but it was not managed properly.

“State governors have a role to play because if you are given intelligence, we expect troops to move in but this does not happen in the North-East because of bad roads and difficult terrains.

“There is the need to partner with state governments to deny the bandits the use of forests. We need to manage these forests.

“Unfortunately, these forests are lying fallow. We have partnerships with defence agencies in different countries and it is critical that we build these partnerships to prevent future attacks," he said.

The former Chief of Air Staff, Sadique Abubakar (retd.), also stated that the Super Tukano aircraft is expected to arrive in the country soon.

“Everything is in place to receive the aircraft. The first six will arrive in Nigeria in July 2021.?

With regards to the bombing of the forests, Abubakar said, it was impossible for the Air Force to bomb the forests in order to flush out criminals.

“On bombing of all criminals, if we do this, it is not ideal because we need to ensure non-criminals are not killed. There are limitations. Even this information sometimes is questionable as some villagers connive with bandits and lure the soldiers to be killed.”

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